Religious Art on Campus
Campus Ministry is an integral part of student life at Our Lady of Good Counsel High School. The mission of a Xaverian Brothers sponsored school includes educating students in Gospel values and the social teaching of the Church so that they are capable of making informed judgments about social issues, most especially the need for peace and nonviolence. Our Campus Ministry integrates Good Counsel High School's Catholic and Xaverian mission and identity into day to day life through four pillars: Word & Worship, Retreat, Service, and Leadership Formation. By creating an environment that directs student focus to faith, the building itself helps to fulfill the mission of Campus Ministry. Imagery throughout the school reminds students and faculty of God’s presence in their daily lives.
Please click on an image below to learn more information about our beautiful artwork.
The Holy Family, located on the north side of the first floor, was chosen to represent the Xaverian value of Trust. The Father trusted Mary and Joseph with his precious son. Mary trusted Joseph, an older man that he would take care of her and her son. Joseph trusted the word of the angel that the child was of the Holy Spirit. This statue carries warmth and humanity that is often missing in other representations of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph.
Saint Maximilian Kolbe, located on the south side of the third floor, was well-known for his desire to preach the good news of God’s love everywhere and anywhere that he could. He was a missionary and eventually went to Nagasaki, Japan to establish a seminary there. During WWII, he was sent to Auschwitz where he died of starvation, sacrificing his life in place of being a married man with children. Saint Maximilian was chosen to represent the Xaverian value Zeal.
Our Lady of Guadalupe with Saint Juan Diego, located on the north side of the second floor, represents the Xaverian value of Humility. In 1500, Mary appeared to Juan and asked that a church be built in that place, site of pagan human sacrifices. This image miraculously appeared on the poncho that was worn by Juan when he presented roses that had been collected during winter to the Bishop. Today, the poncho still hangs in the cathedral built on that site. Scientific testing cannot explain the origin of the image. Our Lady of Guadalupe is patroness of all the Americas and the unborn.
Saint Katharine Drexel, located on the north side of the third floor, was born in Philadelphia and was the second US-born saint. During a visit to the Southwest with her family, she witnessed the plight of Native-American children who were malnourished and undereducated; it prompted her to establish the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament. These women eventually expanded their care to African-American children. Saint Katharine was chosen to represent the Xaverian value Compassion.
A son to a Spanish nobleman and freed slave woman, Saint Martin de Porres, located on the south side of the second floor, was born in Lima, Peru. He was chosen to represent a very important element of an Our Lady of Good Counsel High School education. Saint Martin dedicated his life to caring for the poor, the imprisoned, and slaves. He fed them, clothed them and provided them with medicine. Saint Martin was chosen as a clear symbol of the Xaverian value Service.
Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, located on the south side of the first floor, was born in Albania. She eventually went to India and founded the Missionaries of Charity. She lived a life unencumbered by material possessions, enabling her to care for the sick and dying. She was chosen to represent the Xaverian value of Simplicity.
Our Lady of Wisdom, located on the west side of the building, blesses those who enter through the front doors. Our Lady of Wisdom is an original Good Counsel statue that was placed at the school in 1958. This statue is not technically an Our Lady of Good Counsel statue, as Jesus is facing away from Mary. During the 1980’s, the statue was hit by a car and damaged. If you look closely at the statue, you will notice Jesus’s hand has been repaired and Mary’s chin is blemished.
The four statues and the Stations of the Cross in the chapel traveled with us from our site in Wheaton. Our Lady of the Rosary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus adorn the alcoves in the front of the chapel. Saint Francis Xavier and Saint Joseph grace the back walls of the chapel. The statues and the Stations of the Cross were hand-carved in Oberammergau, Germany, the site of the re-enactment of the Passion of Jesus (held every ten years). Our brother school, Saint Mary’s Ryken in Leonardtown, MD, also owns and displays the same stations.
The Stained Glass Image of Our Lady of Good Counsel located in the chapel, is an interpretation by artist Charles Z. Lawrence. A copy of the original image hangs in our reception area. Both portray the unique characteristics of Our Lady of Good Counsel. Rather than looking outward, the child is looking to His Mother suggesting to all that we should look to Mary for her counsel and guidance. Jesus holding the collar of Mary’s dress implies the intimacy of mother and child.